Filter Post Format:

K&A to exhibit at NASPA 2017 Western Regional Conference Oahu, Hawai'i

Keeling and Associates (K&A) will take part in the esteemed Western Regional Conference run by NASPA in Hawai’i. Taking place from November 4-7, 2017, Dr. Jan Walbert, Vice President and Senior Consultant for Executive Search, will be representing K&A at the conference. This year’s theme is Currents, and attendees are given a prompt for thought ahead of the conference.

Rather than dividing us, the oceans unite us

The currents connect

The currents go in. The currents go out. Reciprocity

The currents flow. They are not static

Movement. Social movements. Political Movements

Currents rise; Currents fall; like the tide. Always moving

Making waves

Processes. Journeys

K&A is a comprehensive higher education consulting firm, specializing in strategy, organizational effectiveness, and executive search. Our primary purpose is to help colleges and universities improve the quality and quantity of student learning. As exceptional problem solvers, we advise our clients on strategy, operational effectiveness, and professional development to improve student learning and success.

Brown University Announces Successful Hire Dr. Vanessa M. Britto to join Brown as AVP and Executive Director of Health and Wellness

Keeling & Associates is proud to announce another successful executive placement with the hire of Dr. Vanessa Britto, of Wellesley College, as assistant vice president and executive director of health and wellness at Brown University.

“Reporting to the vice president for campus life and student services, Dr. Britto will provide strategic, administrative and clinical leadership for medical and mental health services for students at Brown. She will oversee a wide range of health and wellness departments — including Health Services and Counseling and Psychological Services — to provide high-quality, comprehensive and collaborative health care on campus. “

Read more about Dr. Britto and the announcement from Brown here.

Alex Vasquez joins K&A as Senior Consultant

Alex Vasquez, Dean of Students at Amherst College since 2014, will join K&A as Senior consultant on October 1, 2017. Mr. Vasquez, who is completing his Ph.D. at Boston College*, has a wide range of experience in his 20-year career in higher education. Alex has broad experience in student affairs and academic affairs, and has worked in cross-divisional roles to help create a more seamless student experience. He spent 13 years at Wheaton College in Massachusetts in various positions, which spanned in responsibility from academic advising and undergraduate retention, institutional diversity, strategic planning and student leadership development. His passion and expansive knowledge around these issues, as well as organizational leadership, provide a strong foundation for the exceptional work he will do with our clients. We look forward to working with him this Fall.

*Ph.D. expected October 2017, titled “Shaping Strategy: An Institutional Analysis of Decision Making in the Middle Tier.”

Dr. Gage Paine to participate in NASPA Briefing September 18, 2017 at 4pm ET

The Art of Creating Your Career Path

There is no one right path when it comes to thinking about your career. Although we think of our career path as defined by clear guidelines and norms, it is really more art than science.  In this Briefing, the presenters will share career pathing tools and experiences from the field. The content will be offered in a way each participant can personally explore the vast considerations and decisions for themselves.  

Learning Outcomes

Participants will

  • Become familiar with resources and tools to learn and explore vocation and career paths.
  • Learn more than one way of thinking about career pathing, with a focus on personalization.
  • Learn methods of self-understanding, discernment, and reflection to address the anxiety and unknowing of moving ahead.

K&A Statement: We Stand for Justice

It is not sufficient for us, as a consulting company that believes deeply in the principles and values of higher learning and liberal education, to simply share in the shock and dismay that so many Americans feel about the actions, words, and events that disrupted Charlottesville and the University of Virginia this past weekend. We work closely with colleges, universities, and the administrators, faculty, and staff whose teaching, scholarship, and programs and services engage and educate students every day. Three of the K&A staff took degrees from UVA; one served there, on the faculty and as an administrator in student affairs; we have friends, colleagues, and family at UVA and in Charlottesville — one of them a distinguished leader in the city’s African-American community, who probably never expected to see the despicable, disgusting spectacle of white men and women in sheets carrying torches in 2017. The terror, violence, and hatred of the weekend hit home in a powerful way. Now we #standwithCharlottesville.

All of us in K&A recoiled from the sights and sounds of white supremacists shouting and chanting racist, misogynist, homophobic, and anti-semitic words in and after their torchlit invasion of the University’s Grounds. Now we are grieving and heartbroken about the murder — that is what it was — of one young woman and the serious physical and psychological injuries sustained by far too many others in the neo-Nazi terrorist attack in downtown Charlottesville, as well as the deaths of two state troopers in a helicopter crash near the city. We will not abide any of it.

We are grateful for the courage of groups of UVA students who resisted and the strong statements made by University leaders and faculty, Charlottesville’s mayor and police chief, and Virginia’s governor. But gratitude and heartbreak — including our own — are not enough. Martin Luther King’s words resonate today: “History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people.” We learned in the 1980’s, fighting for people with HIV/AIDS, that “silence = death.” Now, in 2017 and beyond, silence = more death: the death of the most cherished and humane values of this nation of immigrants; the end of the dream of social and educational equity; the erasure of progress in our prolonged struggle to embrace the full diversity of human beings and their talents; and, indeed, the demise of liberal education itself, and a rejection of the gifts of higher learning.

So K&A will not be silent. We condemn and repudiate the evil that is white nationalism and its expressions in the words and actions of neo-Nazis and the KKK. We accept and will be accountable for the obligations of our privilege. We celebrate higher learning, liberal education, and the ways in which colleges and universities enrich culture, society, and the world. K&A will not be complacent. We will use every resource and tool that our ideas, writing, presentations, consulting and executive search services, and participation in the work of national organizations offer to say, clearly, loudly, and often: Keeling & Associates stands for justice, equity, community, and our shared humanity.


**Featured image credit: Star Tribune

Cal Poly Pomona names new AVP for Student Affairs Dr. Thomas Cruz-Soto Jr. to begin July 10

K&A is pleased to announce another successful placement at Cal Poly Pomona, Dr. Thomas Cruz-Soto Jr., associate dean of student life at Colgate University, will make the cross-country move to begin in California on July 10th.

From the announcement; “Through effective student-engagement practices, Dr. Cruz-Soto has a demonstrated history of creating and leading initiatives that enhance the educational experiences of students,” said Lea Jarnagin, vice president of the Division of Student Affairs. “He brings a distinguished record of commitment to the core values of access, diversity, equity and inclusion as key principles in achieving institutional objectives. In addition, he has served as an integral leader in the development of major campus events, faculty and staff engagement, and fundraising to support student life.”

A link to the full announcement can be found here.

Dr. Paine contributes to Institutional Research Publication

Dr. Gage Paine, Senior Consultant at Keeling & Associates, was recently published in New Directions for Institutional Research. The title of her monograph is “Legal Considerations for Assessment and Insitutional Research Leaders” and can be found here.


She writes; “Education and law are quite distinct practices and have very different purposes. As the chapters in this monograph point out, for university administrators to do their jobs effectively, it is important to have a clear understanding of the ways education and law differ, the appropriate use of legal advice in educational decision making, and the most effective methods for achieving our educational goals without running afoul of the law. “Let’s call the lawyers!” Is rarely an educator’s enthusiastic response when faced with a potential roadblock caused by institutional policies or legal questions.”


To read more on this topic, follow the link above to purchase access to this chapter. 

University of Redlands appoints Dean of Student Affairs Dr. Donna M. Eddleman is announced for position

“Following a national search, the University of Redlands has announced the appointment of Dr. Donna M. Eddleman as University dean of student affairs, effective August 7.  

“Donna joins us as the first new dean to lead student affairs in 36 years, and thus, her appointment is historic in the life of the University,” said Ralph Kuncl, president of the U of R. “In Donna I foresee a dean, student advocate, and senior leader who will both look back at where we have come from, and forge forward with vision, strategy, and integrity to be a transformative leader in this new era for our students and for student affairs staff.” 


Read the full article here.

NDIR Article on Enhancing Decision Support for Military-Connected Students Dr. Andrew Morse

Dr. Morse of Keeling & Associates, and Dani Molina, Director of the Student Veteran Success Center at CSU – Los Angeles co-authored a chapter in NDIR. This chapter discusses how understanding differences between National Guard members, reservists, active duty personnel, and veterans in higher education can better inform institutional evidence-based decision making to support military connected individuals’ college access and success.


View article here (subscription may be required)

University of Alabama Search Complete! Dr. Toti Perez accepts offer for AVP - Student Health and Wellbeing

From the Office of the Vice President of the University of Alabama;
“Dr. Perez comes to UA from the Georgia Institute of Technology where he has served as director of the Counseling Center since 2005. During his tenure at Georgia Tech, he spearheaded new initiatives for alcohol abuse and recovery, suicide education and prevention, and peer counseling that have made lasting footprints at the institution. Most recently, Dr. Perez and his team have earned recognition for their implementation of Tech Ends Suicide Together, a zero suicide project on their campus. Prior to his time at Georgia Tech, he served as a clinical services director and adjunct professor at both the University of Florida and the University of Georgia.

Dr. Perez earned a bachelor’s degree in biology and theology and a master’s degree in counseling psychology from Boston College. He received a PhD in counseling psychology from the University of Missouri – Columbia. He currently holds licensure as a psychologist and National Register Health Service Provider in Psychology in Florida and Georgia. Throughout his career, Dr. Perez has been a recognized scholar and lecturer in the mental health community and has held a number of high ranking leadership positions in professional health organizations. He was recognized as a Diamond Honoree by the American College Personnel Association (ACPA) in 2013 and as a Fellow by the American Psychological Association (APA) in 2008.

Dr. Perez presents a robust research background in the fields of counseling psychology, management strategies, intervention programming, racial and gender identities, as well as inclusivity in mental health. His student development experience at comparable institutions offers innumerable opportunities for advancing our strategic priorities within the Division of Student Life. I am confident that he possesses the leadership, vision, and energy necessary to bring partners together from inside the Division and across the campus community to realize our vision of positioning UA as a national leader in college behavioral health.”

More information can be found at
Learn more about K&A Search opportunities at